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tv   Newsline  PBS  October 21, 2011 7:00pm-7:30pm PDT

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welcome to "newsline," i'm michio kijima in tokyo. the yen hit a fresh historic high against the dollar on friday, hitting 75.78 at one point in new york trading. the yen broke above its previous record high of 75.95 set on august 19th. investors sold the dollar in exchange for the yen during trading hours in new york. at one point, the yen briefly hit 75.78 against the dollar. market sources say expectations are high that european leaders would come out with a package of measures to stem concerns about europe's debt problems.
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this has led investors to sell the dollar and buy the euro. investors also sold the dollar in exchange for the yen. euro zone finance ministers are discussing how to ease the greek debt crisis and prevent it from spreading to other countries. a meeting of finance ministers from 17 countries that share the single european currency opened talks in brussels on friday. at the meeting they plan to review the additional aid for greece they agreed on in july. the ministers will consider asking commercial banks to accept losses in their greek government bond holdings and are hoping to strengthen the capital base of banks in the region and bolster the european financial stability facility that's designed to support euro members facing financial trouble. the finance ministers of the full european union will meet on saturday followed by a summit of the head of state of the union on sunday. and wednesday. the floods have reached the outskirts of bangkok,
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heightening concerns. water is now flooding the northern part of the thai capital where the government's flood crisis headquarters is overseeing operations. our reporter nataka has more. >> reporter: behind me is the seventh industrial park to be inundated. the rescue operation is ongoing to bring the trapped workers out. the floodwaters reached the ethen dike at the bangkadee industrial park in the northern province neighbing the capital on thursday night. among dozens of high-tech manufacturers operating in the industrial park are japan's toshiba and sony corporations. in some parts of the state the water is two meters deep. water also broke through a part of the flood wall protecting the capital, pouring into the northern part of bangkok.
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the area houses the don muang airport, where the thai government has set up the operation relief center. the airport is also serving as a shelter for about 1,700 people from neighboring areas. the evacuees have no idea when they'll be able to return home. officials along with some 500 volunteers are working around the clock to prepare relief aid for distribution to flood-stricken areas. nataka, nhk world, bangkok. >> meanwhile, japan's industry minister, yukiyo edano said the government is considering helping japanese victims and companies affected by the floods in thailand.
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the ministry launched a task force to study assistance for troubled japanese firms. speak of the meeting, edano said the disaster could have a major impact on the global economy, due to disruption of supply chains. he told officials to gather information and take all necessary steps. a ministry official reported the automobile and electronics appliance companies have been forced to suspend production because of the floods and shortages of components. ming of those companies have no operations. and many are asking for help to meet short-term funding needs. earlier on friday, edano met in tokyo with the head of the japan automobile manufacturers association, and the top company executives. he said the government will do its utmost to provide assistance. "the road ahead" this week
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is looking at the painful process of moving on. nearly 4,000 people listed as missing from japan's march 11th disaster. some families are kinned to search for their loved ones, but an increasing number of people are seeking closure and are holding funerals for their missing relatives, to say good-bye one last time. >> reporter: people gathered for a funeral this month in onagawa in miyagi prefecture. they paid tribute to hiratska, she disappeared after the march 11th tsunami flooded the town. her body was never found. she left behind two grandsons. toshihiko and masuto. the brothers believed she would come home someday. their grandmother raiseded boy
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after their parents left them. toshiko and masuto survived the tsunami because they were at school on higher ground. kasdugo was at home. after the march 11th disaster, the boys kept going back to where their house used to stand, their aunt and foster mother sasaki went with them. they loved for clues about their grandmother's whereabouts. seven months after the march 11th disaster, toshihiko and
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masuko showed signs they were ready to accept their grandmother's death. sasaki thought a funeral would help the brothers come to terms with their loss. >> translator: they've now settled into their new routine. and that gives them enough time and composure to think about their grandmother. i think we should give her a funeral so they can say good-bye to her. once and for all. >> katsuko's family decided to hold her funeral on what would have been her birthday. they put soil from where their home used to stand in an urn in place of her ashes. on the eve of the funeral,
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toshihiko abruptly said his grandmother might have survived the tsunami. >> reporter: masuko dismissed yoshihiko's remarks. sasaki looked on. the following day, 50 people came to kasuko's funeral. they held a ceremony to see off her spirit.
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[ chanting ] >> masato laid the urn inside the family grave. finally the boys said good-bye to their grandmother. >> translator: i miss grandma, but i guess it's okay if she's going to heaven. >> translator: by holding the funeral, they were able to bid farewell to their grandmother. and prepare themselves to move on. >> reporter: after spending months waitingo see their grandmother come home alive,
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toshihiko and masato finally accepted her death. "newsline" is the place to turn to for the latest on japan post march 11th. we have two segments offering two unique perspectives on the fallout from the earthquake and tsunami. "nuclear watch" brings you insight and information on the impact of the fukushima daiichi crisis. and "the road ahead" examines japan's efforts to recover and rebuild. don't miss "nuclear watch" and "the road ahead" on "newsline." winter is fast approaching the areas hit by the march 11th disaster. volunteers are now busy delivering traditional heaters to evacuees to protect them from the cold. on friday, evacuees welcomed the arrival of traditional kotatsu heaters at a housing complex in kesennuma, miyagi prefecture. delivered by groups from taiwan.
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the volunteers delivered a kotatsu and a letter of encouragement to the housing occupants. the kotatsus are a low table fitted with an electric heating element and a surrounding quilt to cover the legs. >> the donators plan to provide 600 kotatsu heaters to evacuates in the city. meanwhile, in another disaster-hit city of ishinomaki, this year's rice harvest was delivered to evacuees living in temporary housing. this local farmer used to grow rice as part of a training program for local junior high school students. he and the students visited about 200 temporary houses on friday and delivered nearly two tons of rice.
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>> translator: i didn't think we could harvest this year. the local people looked so happy when they received the rice. >> translator: i think we will be able to harvest even more rice next year, so i'd like to donate it to the community again. the death of long-time dictator, moammar gadhafi, is sparking celebration across libya tonight. but the nation now faces a challenge of setting up a new democratic government. the national transitional council or ntc is conducting dna tests to confirm his death, in the capital, tripoli, the atmosphere was jubilant. large crowds were expected to celebrate the end of gadhafi's
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42-year rule. >> translator: i can't find words to express my happiness. we finally got rid of our dictator. and now, libya is a free country. >> ntc chairman is due to declare the nation fully liberated on saturday. he's also expected to pledge the early launch of a new interim government. however, the ruling council is already marred by deep divisions and rivalries between islamic and secular groups. the transition to democracy is likely to be a major hurdle for the new libya, which under gadhafi had neither a constitution nor a parliament. for more on the situation in libya, we spoke earlier with a senior member of the national transitional council in tripoli. our first question focused on the controversy over gadhafi's burial site. >> translator: we're afraid that some people might dig up
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gadhafi's grave to take revenge on his body. we want to protect his remains in line with the precepts of islam. we believe that the best solution is to prevent people from knowing the location of his grave. the government will be formed within a period of 30 days. the transitional government will then cooperate with the ntc to prepare the election of a general assembly, that will consist of about 200 members. the transitional period will not exceed eight months. and it will be managed with the help of the united nations. a supreme security committee has been set up bringing together several members of the ntc. its responsibilities will include restoring peace on the streets, convincing policemen to return to work and insuring the restart of state institutions.
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we expect to cooperate with japan in many areas. we need japan's assistance and expertise. especially in the field of water management. as libya faces big problems in that particular sector. >> that was abdul raza qatar. now let's take look at reactions to gadhafi's death from around the world, starting here in tokyo. foreign minister, koichiro gemba, says japan is ready to support the reconstruction of libya. >> translator: i hope libya will be able to rebuild quickly by restoring security and establishing a united interim government. >> japan is set to extend medical assistance to secure artificial limbs for those wounded in the conflict. gemba said japan is ready to start investing in libya, once security is restored. and will be looking to reopen an
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embassy. meanwhile, industry minister, yukiyo edano underlined the importance of securing liberty and security in libya, a major oil producer. japan relies on the middle east for most of its oil imports. the brutal end to gadhafi's 42-year rule prompted reaction from a number of other nations, including the u.s. and china. president barack obama said a year ago the notion of a free libya seemed impossible. >> so this is a momentous day in the history of libya. the dark shadow of tyranny has been lifted. the libyan people have a great responsibility, to build an inclusive and tolerant and democratic libya. >> chinese foreign ministry spokesperson said a new page has been turned in libya's history. >> translator: china hopes transition to an inclusive political process will start as soon as possible. so ethnic solidarity and
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national unity is safeguarded. >> jiang did not comment on the killing of gadhafi. china was the last among the u.n. security council permanent members to approve libya's national transitional council. negotiations between china and the ntc were stalled over the issue of china's rights to development projects in libya. the chinese government had made the deals with the gadhafi regime. u.s. secretary of state, hillary clinton, is winding up a two-day visit to pakistan. her goal was to personally deliver a message that pakistan needs to eradicate locally-based militants blamed for attacks in afghanistan. clinton spoke with reportsers following talks with pakistani foreign minister karr on friday. she said the u.s. is planning to
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step up military operations against taliban forces along the afghan afghan-pakistani border. and urged the government to crack down on the afghan-based militants, including the haqqani network. >> we asked very specifically for greater cooperation from the pakistani side to squeeze the haqqani network and other terrorists, because we know that trying to eliminate terrorists and safe havens on one side of the border is not going to work. >> we are keen to cooperate with you and other countries more closely to be able to evolve a common strategy to be able to fight against terrorism. we are keen to be able to share, to be able to increase cooperation in the intelligence field and other fields. let all that be clear. >> khar refrained from saying whether her country will launch an operation to eradicate
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militants in line with u.s. demands. clinton led an unusually it included c.i.a. chief, david petraeus and joint chiefs of staff, general martin dempsey. the line-up was a clear sign that washington is determined to get its message across. more space junk is hurtling our way. the german aerospace center says nearly two tons of debris from a dead satellite is falling towards the atmosphere, it may reach the surface of the earth in the next few days. the aerospace center projects the satellite known as rosat will re-enter the atmosphere between october 22 and 23, utc. it says it cannot predict the precise time and locations of re-entry. rosat was used for research on black holes and neutron stars and its imaging telescope is the first all-sky survey of x-ray sources. germany launched the satellite in 1990 and ended operations in 1999.
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the german aerospace center says most parts of the 2.4-ton telescope will burn up on re-entry. but it says up to 30 fragments weighing a total of 1.7 tons could crash into the earth. the largest piece of rosat that could reach the ground is the telescope's heat-resistant mirror. the japan aerospace exploration agency is tracking the space junk. >> translator: we cannot accurately predict when or where >> germanenterl fa. esmabability of hen a s.atnews, s iconic fds ucl
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>> t y hit a fresh historic high against the dollar on fray hti 75.78 at one point in new york trading. the yenrobove its previous record high of 755,etn august 19th. investors sold tolr i exchange for the yen during trading hours in new york. at onein ten briefly hit 75.78 against the dollar. maet src say expectations are high that european leaders would come out wh a package of measures to stem concerns about europe's debt obms is has led investors to sell the dollar and buy the eu.
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vestors also sold the dollar in exchange for the yen. euro zone finance ministers are discussing how to t eedebt crisis and prevent it from spreading to other countries. a meeting of finance ministers fr t 1ouri tt sre the single europeanurnc openedalks in brussels on friday afternoon. at the meeting, they planned to review their additional aid for greece they agreed on in july. theinte will also consider asking commercial banks to accept lse i tirre government bond holdings. they're hoping to senheth capital base of banks in the region and bothster the eopn financial stability facility that's designed to support euro mbersacg financial trouble. the finance ministers oth fu european union will meet on saturday, followed by aummit of the heads of the state of the union on sunday. and wednesday. that's our broadcast for this hour on "newsline," we'll bkit moreews in half
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an hour. i'm michio kijima in tokyo. thank you for watching. e-e.
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